January 1st, 2020 - December 31st, 2021

2021 SAMAAP Board of Directors

For those of us who have been members of SAMAAP from its beginning, the West Indian Museum has become a very important part of our existence. We are not only involved in the activities to maintain the building that once was a church and cultural center for the West Indian migrants during the first part of the twentieth century. We are also involved in the preservation and projection of the West Indian traditions, which are an important part of Panamanian culture. We give God thanks for all the persons who have collaborated with us over the past 40 years, and we renew our commitment to continue working with passion, honesty, and wisdom to honor the memory of the men and women who came from the Caribbean islands to contribute to the development of Panama.


On Tuesday December 29th, 2018 at 7:00 pm the new Board of Directors was sworn in virtually.

President: Arcelio H. Hartley

Vice President: Nyasha Warren

Treasurer: Melva Lowe de Goodin

Recording Secretary: Verónica D. Forte

Correspondence and Archival Secretary: Gloria Branch

Public Relations Secretary: Marva Christie

Admissions Secretary: Carmela de Gobern

Secretary of Social Development and Welfare: Catalina Garrido Eastmond

Secretary of International Affairs: Marva Christie

Law and Order Officer: Dario Shirley James

Member-at-Large: Anthony McLean


SAMAAP (The Society of Friends of the West Indian Museum of Panama) is a civic non-profit organization, which has as its objectives to support and raise funds for the maintenance and extension of the work of the West Indian Museum of Panama. In addition, the organization is also dedicated to supporting and sponsoring activities that contribute to the social and cultural development of the community and feature the best aspects of afro-Caribbean culture.


Society of Friends of the West Indian Museum (SAMAAP) was formed in March 1981. The primary objective of this civic, non-profit group has been to foment community interest in the projects of the Museum as well as to sponsor socio-cultural and academic activities that promote West Indian Culture in Panama.

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